Legend has it that pretzels were first developed in the seventh century, making them one of the world’s oldest snack foods.They are believed to have been invented by a monk from northern Italy or southern France, who was baking unleavened bread for Lent. “Pretzels were then fasting food, but are today’s fast food,” says Bernard Vetter, research and development manager at Brezelbäckerei Ditsch.Ditsch’s first UK store was set up in Cambridge and its second UK store is located at the Coopers Square Shopping Centre in Burton-upon-Trent, Staffordshire. “We have found that British people loved pretzels,” says Vetter. “We think that soft pretzels are going to be like ciabatta; once upon a time, not many people had heard of it. Today, almost every baker sells ciabatta.”He says the shape of pretzels is a tribute to Jesus, who, when laid in the tomb, had his arms crossed over his chest. Over time, the pretzel’s shape has become a symbol of good luck and good health.Pretzels now come in all shapes and sizes. Brezelbäckerei Ditsch, makes a wide range of pretzel products, including: pretzel breadsticks; onion, tomato, ham and cheese pretzel rolls; and pretzel-style croissants. The company’s flagship product is its soft pretzel, the ’Filialprodukte’. It has 278 calories, 8.4g of protein, 50.9g of carbohydrate and 4.2g of fat. Soft pretzels can be eaten like sandwiches or rolls, have a much higher moisture content than hard pretzels and, therefore, a shorter shelf life.Brezelbäckerei Ditsch was founded in 1919, when master baker Wilhelm Ditsch opened a confectionery shop in Mainz, Germany – the soft pretzel capital at the time. To keep up with the high demand, “pretzel men”, dressed in white, were sent out into the streets and to the restaurants and inns of Mainz, offering basketfuls of fresh pretzels. The third generation of the Ditsch family, Peter Ditsch, used the family recipe to produce soft pretzels in unbaked form, which were frozen and delivered.Store developmentSince then, the company has become the world’s largest manufacturer of freshly baked soft pretzels, with 180 Ditsch stores across Germany and expansion plans in the UK. The stores account for 20% of the business, the other 80% is stock that is sold to other companies, including specialised wholesalers for bakery and restaurant suppliers, bakery chains, caterers, restaurateurs and home services.The thick part of the soft pretzel is called the tummy and the folded parts are the arms. “This is what makes a pretzel great,” says Vetter. “You have the softness of the tummy and the crispiness of the arms. It’s almost like two products.”The main ingredients in pretzel dough include soft wheat flour, shortening, water, yeast, salt and sugar. These form a gluten that can be formed into various shapes. The product is then dipped in lye (a caustic solution). Salt is usually sprinkled on top to finish the product, but can be scraped off. When Vetter was asked about his concerns over reducing salt levels in products, he replied: “It’s all a question of how much you eat. If you eat fewer cakes, then you have more room for pretzels.” n? Bernard Vetter studied bakery technology in Berlin from 1990 to 1992. He started his career in the baking industry in 1996 and, since 1998, has worked for Brezel- bäckerei Ditsch.
SHARE Email Facebook Twitter Governor Wolf and First Lady Frances Wolf Discuss the Impact of Education Funding Increases in Philadelphia during “Schools that Teach” Roundtable and Tour First Lady Frances Wolf, Press Release, Schools That Teach, Severance Tax Philadelphia, PA – Governor Tom Wolf and First Lady Frances Wolf today continued their “Schools That Teach” tour in Philadelphia, where they heard from teachers and administrators in the Philadelphia School District about the district’s plans to ensure that education funding from the governor’s 2015-16 budget goes directly into the classroom.“Pennsylvania ranks near the bottom in the country in state funding for K through 12 education and my proposed budget makes historic investments at all levels – early childhood education through higher education,” said Governor Wolf. “After years of funding cuts that resulted in the loss of educators, increased class sizes, and cuts to valuable programs, I want to ensure that the new funding in my budget reaches the classroom and directly impacts student achievement. Focusing on education will allow us to lay the foundation for long-term economic growth.”Governor Wolf’s budget proposal restores massive cuts made over the last four years, with a commitment to increase school funding by $2 billion over four years by instituting a commonsense severance tax on oil and natural gas. Governor Wolf’s proposal, called the Pennsylvania Education Reinvestment Act, is expected to generate over a billion dollars by 2017 by enacting a reasonable 5% severance tax plus 4.7 cents per thousand feet of volume on natural gas extraction.In a roundtable discussion at William H. Hunter Elementary School, the governor and first lady heard from school leaders and stakeholders about their plans to offer advanced courses and STEM-focused programs to prepare students for higher education, as well as to provide assistance through professional development, college and career counseling, and technical education to ensure smooth transitions into the workforce. The district also hopes to provide personalized help and community partnerships to assist struggling students and their families, as well as restore enrichment programs like music, arts, world languages, and library services.“This is an important opportunity for districts to have comprehensive conversations about how to invest this funding on proven resources and programs that will improve student learning,” Governor Wolf said. “What is being proposed here in Philadelphia is a prime example of a plan that will ensure this historic education investment reaches the classroom while providing clear benchmarks to measure the results of student achievement.”“You can see what happens when children have access to opportunities. We need Governor Wolf’s funding to open up those opportunities in Philadelphia,” said Philadelphia School District Superintendent Dr. William Hite. “Here in our district, we are asking each school to tell us how they’d use the additional funding in the governor’s budget to their unique needs. We look forward to working with the governor to deliver resources that Philadelphia desperately needs.”In March, Department of Education Acting Secretary Pedro Rivera sent a letter to superintendents in all 500 districts detailing accountability measures to ensure the education funding proposed in Governor Wolf’s 2015-2016 budget is spent directly on students in the classroom to allow them to compete in a modern economy. In the letter, Acting Secretary Rivera called on districts to submit plans to ensure this new investment reaches the classroom and to measure results for Pennsylvania’s students. As of yesterday, 92 percent of Pennsylvania school districts across the commonwealth submitted funding impact plans to the state Department of Education, outlining how the governor’s proposed $400 million basic education funding increase will be invested directly in classrooms.MEDIA CONTACT: Jeff Sheridan – 717.783.1116# # # May 29, 2015
Area Baseball Regional Scores.Saturday (6-2)1A @ Morristown.Rising Sun 7 White River Valley 2Indy Lutheran 10 Edinburgh 1Championship.Indy Lutheran 6 Rising Sun 13A @ North Harrison.Lawrenceburg 7 Boonville 5Jasper 13 Silver Creek 3Championship.Jasper 4 Lawrenceburg 2